St. Louis, MO – The board Anheuser-Busch has unanimously agreed to accept a $52 billion buyout offer from the Belgian beer maker, InBev.
In a joint press release, the brewers announced that the combined companies will be called Anheuser-Busch InBev.
The agreement signals the end of over 150 years of local management of Anheuser-Busch and the Budweiser brands. InBev CEO, Carlos Brito says the merger will respect that tradition.
"We continue to be very committed to St. Louis, to the roots of A-B as a company and as a brand, Budweiser. We're not going to close any of the breweries in the U.S., the 12 breweries will remain open. The headquarters for the North American operation will continue to be in St. Louis," Brito said.
The expanded company will have leading positions in the world's top five markets beer markets in China, the United States, Russia, Brazil and Germany.
The companies expect little regulatory opposition and expect the deal to close by the end of this year. Brito says the combinations of Bud's market savvy with InBev's global footprint is a perfect marriage.
"Of course now with Budweiser as our global flagship brand, that will give us a great platform to develop that global brand, together with Becks and Stella Artois," he said.
InBev built its market reputation on strict cost cutting and supply efficiencies.